Developers win appeal to build 300 new homes in village

PUBLISHED: 15:15 15 June 2018 | UPDATED: 15:15 15 June 2018

An appeal to build 300 homes off Nightingale Lane near Downham Market have been allowed. Picture: Ian Burt

An appeal to build 300 homes off Nightingale Lane near Downham Market have been allowed. Picture: Ian Burt

Hundreds of new homes on the outskirts of Downham Market will “put a strain” on the town, it has been warned.

Fears about the development of 300 homes have been raised after an appeal was won by developers looking to build on land off Nightingale Lane in nearby Denver.

The Grosvenor Partnerhip already had outline planning permission to build 170 homes on the land but last year the company applied to extend the permission for up to 300 homes.

The plans were refused by West Norfolk council - but the developers have now won an appeal against the decision after an independent planning inspector gave the project the go-ahead.

John Redcar, vice-chairman of Denver Parish Council, said he was disappointed with the decision and that it would “put a strain” on Downham.

He said: “I do not think that with a large development on the north of the town that we need this.

“People already struggle to get doctors’ appointments and it would also put extra pressure on the schools.”

John Lane, parish council chairman, added: “There is not much we can do as a parish council, but there were not many people in the village in favour of it.

“I’m struggling to see where all the people to fill these houses would come from. All we can say is that we tried.”

The original application was turned down on the combined grounds of the number of houses being out of character with the area and highways issues.

However, outline planning permission has now been granted to the scheme, following the planning inspectorate’s decision.

The inspector said: “Subject to the careful consideration of matters of detail that would be controlled at the reserved matters stage, I see now reason why the proposed development would necessarily affect the character and appearance of the area in a significant manner, beyond taking the site from being predominantly farmland to a developed, residential area.

“Therefore, the appeal development need not have a significant effect on the character and appearance of the area, including in respect to density.”

With outline permission now granted, Grosvenor must return to the council with specific details of what the development will include.

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